Tooth Discoloration: What are the Causes and Remedies?

Who does not want a sparkly smile? 

Let us face this! No one likes stained teeth. They make you feel less confident. There are several reasons that lead to such discoloration. Well, if you noticed that your teeth are not that white now or have lost their luminosity, then you need not worry. There are some great cosmetic dentistry treatments you can count on.

But before we talk about the remedies, it is imperative that you understand why your tooth gets discolored and what you can do to reverse it, and how you can prevent it.

Causes of tooth discoloration

Here’s the rundown of factors that causes discolored tooth:

  1. The natural aging process: As we age, our tooth enamel wears down. The second layer after enamel is dentin, which is yellow in color. So, teeth start appearing yellowish once the outer layer of teeth gets damaged.
  2. Foods and beverages: Colored candies, popsicles, red wine, dark soda, coffee, tea, citrus fruits, beets, raspberries, blueberries, tomatoes, cherries, some fruit juices, etc., are also the culprits of staining your teeth.
  3. Trauma: Chipping, falling, or other trauma can harm the enamel, which results in discoloration of the tooth. 
  4. Disease: Illness and conditions (celiac disease, rickets, calcium deficiency, etc.) also impact teeth’s enamel and cause discolored teeth. 
  5. Tobacco: Chewing and smoking tobacco not only lead to gum disease but can also give you stained teeth.
  6. Mouthwash liquid: Oral rinses that contain chlorhexidine or cetylpyridinium chloride can lead to a change in the color of your teeth.
  7. Poor dental hygiene: Not brushing and flossing twice a day, especially at night, is one of the main causes of tooth discoloration. This is because food particles and bacteria cling to the teeth and stain them.
  8. Genetics: This can also be one of the reasons for having stained teeth. 
  9. Medications: Treatments like chemotherapy, neck and head radiation, and medications including antidepressants, antihistamines, antipsychotic drugs, etc., can cause tooth stains.

Types of tooth discoloration 

It is vital to determine the type of tooth discoloration you have, as this will help in undergoing the treatment accordingly. Listed below are the three types of tooth discoloration.

Extrinsic teeth stain: This type of stain occurs on the outer layer of the tooth, which is known as enamel. Such stains are the result of smoking and consuming food and beverages like red wine, coffee, cola, and dark sodas. 

Intrinsic teeth stain: It occurs on the interior layer of the tooth, which is called dentin. When the enamel is worn down, the dentin becomes discolored. These stains are caused due to the use of too much fluoride in early childhood, trauma, tooth decay, internal bleeding, and certain medications.

Age-related teeth stain: It is the combination of extrinsic and intrinsic stains. As you age, the outer layer of the teeth wears down, and dentin is exposed, which is yellow in color. Also, teeth lose their luminosity over time due to the consumption of certain foods and drinks.

Treatment for teeth whitening

You do not have to worry if you have tooth discoloration. Mentioned below are some of the restorative options available to help reverse tooth discoloration.

At-home teeth whitening

  • Regular cleaning: Maintaining good oral hygiene is a must. Clean your teeth by brushing and flossing on a daily basis. It can help accentuate your teeth’s appearance naturally. 
  • Avoid certain foods: Make sure you refrain from consuming stain-causing foods and beverages every other day.
  • Over-the-counter products: Those with intrinsic stains can consider using whitening strips or whitening toothpaste. Do not forget to ask your dentist first.

In-office teeth whitening

  • Professional whitening products: A dentist will use hydrogen peroxide solution to speed up the process of improving your tooth color. Apart from this, he or she may use a custom tray or products with desensitizer. Worry not. The products dentists use are safe and effective.
  • Dental crowns: These are the caps that are placed on damaged teeth. The color of dental crowns is customized to match the color of your teeth.
  • Dental bonding: In this procedure, a dentist applies tooth-colored composite resin material to enhance your teeth’s color. 
  • Dental veneers: These are custom-made tooth-colored shells that are made of porcelain. They are attached to the front surface of the teeth to improve the shape of your smile.

Best treatments according to the type of stains on teeth

Extrinsic teeth stain: At-home teeth whitening trays and in-office teeth whitening treatments that use bleaching agents.

Intrinsic teeth stain: Cosmetic treatments such as dental bonding and porcelain veneers.

Age-related teeth stains: Depending on the individual’s case, the dentist will consider either traditional teeth whitening treatment or dental bonding and veneers.

Professional teeth whitening procedures are usually safe. However, these treatments demand much care. Your dentist will advise you on how you can take care of your teeth post-treatment. 

Tips for preventing tooth discoloration

You can get pearly white teeth after getting the treatment. But then, you have to stick to some healthy oral habits to maintain your shiny and bright smile. Here is the list of tips that will keep teeth stains away:

  • Practice good dental hygiene by regularly brushing and flossing twice a day. Use fluoride toothpaste.
  • Quit smoking at all costs.
  • See a dentist for regular dental cleaning and checkups.
  • Avoid foods, citrus fruits, and sugary items that discolor the teeth.
  • If you grind your teeth while sleeping, inform your dentist about it.
  • Use a straw for drinking beverages that leads to stains.
  • Avoid aggressive brushing.

Looking for professional teeth whitening in Pinole?

Tooth discoloration is pretty common these days because of a myriad of reasons. But the best part is that you can get shiny bright teeth by getting a cosmetic dentistry treatment. At Tara Hills Dental clinic, we offer the best teeth whitening services at an affordable rate. Visit us and let our skilled dentist assess the condition of your teeth and give you the right treatment. 

Always remember, you do not have to compromise on the beauty of your smile.

So, are you ready to flaunt that snow-white smile you have always wished for? Request an appointment or call us at 510-724-7474.